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The relationships we have with healthcare services are important in creating good health. However, many of us may experience problems in accessing supportive healthcare services.
Finding out you have HIV as a young woman or teenager can also feel really tough.
As young women and teenagers, we may find it particularly difficult seeing doctors and nurses who are also treating our parents, or other family members.
Some of us women in Europe may find further difficulties because we are migrants (with or without papers). Many of us face barriers unique to our situation.
The healthcare and other caretaking professions employ large numbers of women. It stands to reason that some women health workers are HIV positive. For those of us who may work in healthcare, although being openly HIV positive in the work place could be of huge benefit to all our healthcare services, there are still we must face.
Many aspects of healthcare carry no risk of HIV transmission whatsoever. Openly supportive healthcare settings would have much to teach other settings and sectors.Moreover, knowledge of our presence in the healthcare system would give a hugely positive message to people living with HIV in our care.
[i] Silvia Petretti. Personal communications with Positively UK youth group members at poster presentation during AIDS 2010. Mind the gap: between paediatric and adult HIV services, WEPE0625.
[ii] Cairns, Gus. UKCAB. Patients’ attitudes to HIV testing. Available athttp://www.bhiva.org/101201_GusCairns.aspx. Accessed 21 April 2011.
[iii] Romero-Ortuño, Román. Access to health care for illegal immigrants in the EU: should we be concerned? European Journal of Health Law. 2004. 11:245-272.
[iv] International Community of Women Living with HIV and AIDS. Silent Voices: A Community Engagement Project. 2006. Available at http://www.icw.org/files/silent%20voices%20full%20report%2006.doc. Accessed February 2011.
[v] PozFem UK. Women, HIV and Sexual Health in the UK. Available at http://www.poz-fem-uk.org/docs/WomenHIVandSexualHealth.pdf. Accessed April 2011.
[vi] Moroloake et al. Greater involvement of people living with HIV in health care. Journal of the International AIDS Society. 2009. 12:4.
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